Kanye West‘s comments from a campaign fundraiser in South Carolina have spread like wildfire. On Sunday, West sparked backlash when he said Harriet Tubman didn’t free slaves. On Tuesday, Tina Wyatt, Tubman’s great-great-great-grand-niece, spoke with TMZ about West’s remarks.
“If we were left alone, we would be in an entirely different place,” Wyatt said. “What he needs to understand, if it wasn’t for people like [Tubman]…especially her. Because she was selfless. She was already free. She didn’t have to come back. She didn’t have to risk her life, but she still did it countless times.”
During the campaign rally, Kanye claimed that Harriet Tubman sent the slaves she freed to work at other plantations. “Harriet Tubman…never actually freed the slaves,” he said. “She just had the slaves go work for other white people.”
“If it hadn’t been for people like her,” Wyatt continued, “he would still be on that plantation. He would not be able to be out there saying the things he says and he wouldn’t have the money he has because they would have it all.”
The interviewer asked Wyatt what Harriet Tubman would say to Kanye if she were alive.
“She would tell him, uplift,” Wyatt said. “I don’t know where he’s putting his money. It seems like he wants to talk about a lot of things but the thing is, put your money into something that will uplift other people. [Running for president] is not one of them.”
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